I was first introduced to Base’s work when my mom got us The Eleventh Hour. The story is a mystery that takes place at a birthday costume party for an elephant (with a solution that even an adult might struggle to figure out), but what stuck with me was the colorful, brilliant artwork. Every page is richly detailed and filled with hints, codes, and puzzles. There’s a sealed packet at the back with all the answers, but it is well worth the struggle to figure out the answer for yourself.
Animalia is one of the best alphabet books I’ve ever seen. Every page is filled with layers upon layers of things that begin with the assigned letter. The letter H, for example has the Hairy Hogs, but a closer inspection reveals honey, hamsters, a house on a hill, and even a happy face sticker. I could read this book today and probably find things I’ve never noticed before.
I’ve loved Base’s books for years, and the best part is he’s still working. For more information about Graeme Base and his books, click here. You can even follow him on Instagram!
(Would that make it an InstaGraeme?)